Vegan Chocolate Easter Eggs? Yes Please!

vegan chocolate on a boardTis the season for chocolate. Between Valentine’s and Easter, we’re practically made of the stuff. For several years, I’ve asked readers to boycott Hershey’s—the biggest chocolate manufacturer in America—because of delays in implementing third-party certification to reduce the prevalence of child labor, forced labor, child trafficking and verbal, physical and sexual harassment in Cote d’Ivoire and Ghana, where the company sources its cocoa. I even published candy guides to help parents navigate away from companies like Nestle, which phased out artificial food additives in their European confectionary line three years ago, but have yet to make the same move here in America. (Oh, and bottled California’s water without remorse during the drought.) Until recently, I had no idea that there was so much choice when it comes to conscious chocolate! From fair trade to organic to—yes—even vegan chocolate, this candy has come a long way, baby. [Read more…]

Boycott Hershey Update

hershey's chocolate against white backgroundAfter nearly 400 Mommy Greenest readers signed a petition urging Hershey to speed up its goals of certifying cocoa production and eliminating child slavery, the company responded quickly. I called Hershey yesterday, expecting to confirm receipt of the petition, which I had mailed less than two weeks ago. But within a few hours of leaving a message for CEO John Bilbrey, I received a lengthy email from their consumer relations department, which shared some things I didn’t know about the chocolate behemoth. Let me tell you, I was surprised. [Read more…]

Boycott Hershey’s

hershey's kiss on white backgroundRecently, Hershey’s responded to a child labor lawsuit and pressure from human rights groups by committing to 100% third-party certified production in Africa, where it sources the majority of its cocoa.

The certification should eliminate many claims of child labor, forced labor, child trafficking and verbal, physical and sexual harassment that have plagued America’s biggest chocolate manufacturer.

But there’s one problem with this objective: It’s not set to take effect until 2020. With an estimated 1.8 million children currently forced to labor on cocoa farms in West Africa, more than 10 million children will be affected over the next six years. I think that’s too slow, don’t you? With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, let’s do something about it! [Read more…]